Saturday, December 10th, 2016 08:39 pm
In 2012 the Bishop of Leicester wrote an opinion piece for the Guardian called "There is no place for homophobia in the church." Someone in the comments asked whether an imam would be writing an article called "There is no place for homophobia in the mosque."

There's a lot to say about that, but I want to point out something about jargon. Turning "church" into "mosque" shows that the commenter thought the bishop was talking about a building. But the article's context shows that the bishop meant "the community of all Christians". (I believe the Muslim equivalent is "Ummah"; please do correct me if I'm wrong.)

I hadn't even considered that the headline might mean there was no physical place for homophobia in a building. I suspect the bishop hadn't either. I wonder how much more of what Christians say is obscured by jargon and misinterpreted by almost everyone outside the church.
Friday, December 9th, 2016 12:10 pm
I went to Gamestop today because they emailed me a $5 coupon, which is basically half off a LEGO Dimensions character, and the kid who rang me up was confused by the box.

"It's Mr. T! - Why does it say B.A. Baracus?"

"That was his character's name on the A-Team. I don't know if you're old enough to remember that show..."

"Oh, sure, my dad raised me right. We watched A-Team, the classic Terminator movies, Invader Zim..."

I didn't say anything, but I feel compelled to point out that A-Team was part of my childhood, Terminator was my teenage years, and Invader Zim came out when I was in my TWENTIES. *shakes fist, yells at cloud*

Of course, when I was in my twenties, I couldn't have gone into a Gamestop without being condescended to, so that's something, I guess.

In other news, after several days of drought-busting rain, it is very dry and cold today and I am addressing Christmas cards. No major plans for the weekend, for a change.
Thursday, December 8th, 2016 02:12 pm
Here are some interesting definitions from my personal Plover steno dictionary.

Proper nouns

I have a habit of setting up proper nouns with -LZ on the right hand. (It's unlikely to clash with anything; there's no reason beyond that.) So for example:

"K-LZ": "King's Cross",
"SP-LZ": "St Pancras",

(K-LZ and SP-LZ were for typing out this story.)


"KR-GS": "{^~|”}",
"KR-GZ": "{^~|\"}",
"KW-GS": "{~|“^}",
"KW-GZ": "{~|\"^}",
In the standard dictionary, KW-GS and KR-GS are open and close quotes, respectively. I've remapped them to curly quotes. The straight quotes are moved to KW-GZ and KR-GZ in case I need them.

"-RBS": "{^,” said}",
"SKHRAPLS": "{^!” said}",
Separate chords for typing things like comma, close quote, "said", These save me a lot of time. SKHRAPLS also avoids writing a capital S in, for example, "Woof!" Said the dog (because the exclamation mark makes Plover think you've started a new sentence).

"R-R": "{^}{#Return}{#Return}{^}{-|}",
"R-RS": "{^}{#Return}{#Return}{^}“{^}{-|}",
Because I can never remember the chord for "new paragraph".

"TK-RB": "{^—}",
TK-RB is the standard stroke for a dash, but here it's remapped to an em dash.

"TEUL": "until",
"TIL": "till",
In the standard dictionary, these are until and 'til, respectively. I have remapped them because 'til is not a thing.
"OG": "oh",
"PH-R": "Mr {-|}",
"PH-RS": "Mrs {-|}",
"SED": "said",
"THO": "though",
"WAOEU": "why"
The standard strokes for oh and Mr are bizarre and unmemorable.
Tuesday, December 6th, 2016 01:27 am
Few things make me question my commitment to pacifism faster than being serenaded at 1am by a neighborhood cat in heat.

At least I just solved a months-old DW support request mystery while lying awake in bed. So there's that.
Sunday, December 4th, 2016 12:07 am
The first weekend of December is always busy, but this one was busier than most. It started Friday night with a fun holiday symphony concert downtown with my mom. The second half of the program featured a live soundtrack performance accompanying the film The Snowman, which was amazing.

For the past three years, our church music director has asked us to perform for the holiday open house at a downtown landmark on the first Saturday, so our recorder consort dressed up and played carols for 45 minutes. Then we grabbed lunch and picked up the kids just in time for their weekend swim lesson, which was more exciting than usual because about 40 minutes into our hour, someone pulled the fire alarm and we had to evacuate the building.

After that, I got Robby to drop me off at H&P's house. Heather's birthday is in a few days and she decided she wanted to go see The Secret Life of Pets at the dollar theatre, so that's what we did. It wasn't a great movie, but it had its funny moments.

Since I needed a ride home, I ended up staying at H&P's house after the movie longer than I intended, and forgot to take an allergy pill today. Heather gave me a Zyrtec, so I'll probably sleep 12 hours tomorrow. But first, I have to get through a busy Advent service and yet another afternoon concert performance that we're usually asked to help out with on the first Sunday of December.
Saturday, December 3rd, 2016 11:02 pm
The site slowdown tonight (Saturday night) is due to database load -- Saturday nights are one of our busiest times and we're still going to need to do some performance tweaks to our new setup over the next few days as we run into load issues. (Some problems only show up once all y'all start banging on the site!) We've made a few changes now that will improve things for some people, and will do a more permanent fix later on tonight or tomorrow morning once the traffic dies down, since doing it now would just increase database load.

Site performance may continue to be rocky on and off for the next few days until we get everything tuned the way it needs to be tuned -- thank you for your patience!
Friday, December 2nd, 2016 11:23 am
The downside of having a laptop with a 128GB SSD is that things can fill up quickly if I don't keep an eye on them. Earlier this week I installed Parallels Desktop, and the Ubuntu virtual machine I created took up 9GB of space, which put me dangerously close to the 90% threshold. So I did a disk space audit (using the nifty DaisyDisk).

I found the El Capitan upgrade installer that I cached before Mac OS Sierra was released, which took up 6GB. I moved that to a thumb drive. (Still running Yosemite, because if it ain't broke...)

I also discovered an 8.5GB cache of Apple Music files from streaming music. Deleting those got me back down to 76% disk usage.

Also taking up significant disk space but not deleted: my HD copy of Star Wars: The Force Awakens (6 GB) and my Steam copy of LEGO Marvel Superheroes (6 GB). Because what if I got stranded somewhere with only my laptop and no internet? :)

The other thing I thought about deleting but didn't was the which is almost 5GB. That will probably be the next thing to go if I start running out of space again, because realistically I'm probably never going to create a GUI app if I spend all my time on web apps and command-line scripts.
Friday, December 2nd, 2016 10:21 am
  • The site may occasionally be slow to respond or have trouble connecting as we tune servers and databases, or you may receive Gateway Timeout errors.

  • Comment notification emails may be delayed due to database load.

  • Inbound email (post-by-email and comment-by-email) may be delayed for a bit while your outgoing mail server catches up with the switch.

  • Email sent to your address may be more likely to be marked as spam, due to our mail server changing its IP address.

  • The site search database may be missing entries and comments and will catch up over the next few days, as database load allows. Entries and comments posted since the site came back up will be added to the index as they're posted.

  • Logging into other sites using your Dreamwidth OpenID is working again! Yay!

  • Loading embedded content over secure connections should be fixed!

  • There is a known problem with trying to rearrange elements on the Beta Update page because a script element isn't loading properly. Update: This should be fixed now!

Let us know if you see anything else odd with the site that isn't listed here!

Friday, December 2nd, 2016 08:28 am
Now that the big DW maintenance event is over and I've gotten my first solid night's sleep in a week, I can start thinking about other things, such as: the holiday movie season!

I did pretty well in November, seeing 3/4 of the films I wanted to see that came out that month, but the next six weeks are going to be something of an avalanche, so I'm going to make a list here ordering them by release date and highlighting the ones I want to make sure I see in the theater, as opposed to waiting for the DVD release.

- Moana (out now) - getting great reviews, family friendly, but not a must-see.

- La La Land (12/9) - looks amazing and I love musicals, but not a must-see.

- Collateral Beauty (12/16) - love the actors and I cry every time I see the trailer, but not a must-see.

- ROGUE ONE (12/16) - I will see it at least twice in the theater because Star Wars. But probably not until 12/17, because 12/16 is our symphony chorus performance.

- Assassin's Creed (12/21) - I haven't played any of the games yet, but my friends want to see it and I will probably go along.

- The Space Between Us (12/21) - I've been seeing the previews for this for so long, I thought it was on DVD already, but I do want to catch it at some point.

- Sing (12/21) - this is a borderline must-see and probably will-see, because it is animated and includes singing.

- PASSENGERS (12/21) - Chris Pratt & Jen Lawrence in spaaaaaaace, hi have you met me?

- A Monster Calls (1/6) - I've been holding off reading the book because I want to see the movie unspoiled, but it looks like the sort of children's story I love. (See also Pete's Dragon & The BFG, from earlier this year.) And I know Patrick Ness is great, so I have high hopes.

- Hidden Figures (1/6) - I missed including this on the original list because the release date keeps shifting around, but you better believe I won't miss this one.
Thursday, December 1st, 2016 08:09 pm

An Image of Magnolia Blossom with Gen Prompt Bingo Round 11 and the url superimposed over it

[community profile] genprompt_bingo is a low commitment multi-fandom, multi-media bingo challenge.

Its aim is to provide bingo cards of gen-style prompts to be used as inspiration in creating fic, images, meta, fanmixes, vids or any other kind of fannish activities. Although the prompts themselves are "Gen" (i.e., no prompts are specifically about romance or sex) fills may be of any genre, style or rating.

Prompt lists are renewed at the start of December and April. New cards can be claimed then even if a previous card has not been completed.

Round 11 is open
Thursday, December 1st, 2016 12:14 pm
We have now cut over to our new hardware! If you can see this, the site should be working for you.

Things you don't need to tell us about:

* The site may look a little weird or naked for a while as your computer/network/ISP/etc catches up with the switch.
* Comment notification emails should be going out properly, but inbound email (post-by-email and comment-by-email) may be delayed for a bit while your outgoing mail server catches up with the switch.
* The site search database is a few days out of date (missing entries from the past two days) and will catch up over the next few days. Entries and comments posted since the site came back up will be added to the index when they're posted.

Known issues:

* Accessing the site will be slow for a while as the caches warm back up, and you may receive Gateway Timeout errors.
* Due to the occasional database connection problem due to high load and site slowness earlier, some comments did not generate emailed notifications and those notifications can't be re-sent. New comments made since we resolved the DB problems are generating email notifications, but slowly (due to the general database slowness).
* Logging in to other sites using your Dreamwidth OpenID is broken (& we'll fix it as soon as we can!)

Let us know if you see anything else weird!
Thursday, December 1st, 2016 10:35 am
So, here we are.

What magic have we wrought? What pain and suffering shall commence from the decisions made heretofore? We know not now but must instead rely on that most vainglorious of companions: the Future.

For what the Future holds she shall not say and instead shall reveal it in her own time.

Mercy go with us all.
Thursday, December 1st, 2016 09:17 am
We are now within our maintenance window for today. The site will go into read-only mode when we're ready to begin the maintenance, and will be unavailable for at least most of the morning. Watch our Twitter status account for updates!
Thursday, December 1st, 2016 03:39 pm
fancake banner for round 73 amnesty: thematic multifandom recs

Until the end of the year we'll be accepting recs for all previous fancake themes. Come and join us.
Wednesday, November 30th, 2016 10:35 pm
I made a pilgrimage to my semi-local independent bookstore today, since it's only a couple of blocks from where we're working this week. I had seen their staff post a picture on their Instagram account recently that included an intriguing-looking book called Women In Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed The World by Rachel Ignotofsky. Happily they still had two copies in stock (we bought both). It's a slim, fabulously illustrated volume ideal for the coffee table of the feminist nerd in your life.

Two photos )

While continuing to browse, my attention was then caught by the title Wonder Women: 25 Innovators, Inventors, and Trailblazers Who Changed History. This one, by Sam Maggs with illustrations by Sophia Foster-Dimino, is also in a very casual, friendly format but features more in-depth biographical information and interviews. It's further divided into categories: (Women of) Science, Medicine, Espionage, Innovation, and Adventure.

Two photos )

If you are looking for holiday gift ideas, you may find that these make great gifts, or you may just want them for yourself!
Wednesday, November 30th, 2016 10:06 pm
A reminder: the site will be down/in read-only mode tomorrow for server maintenance for at least a little while. (Some people may also have trouble accessing the site even after it comes back up, depending on your network/computer/ISP settings.) We're beginning the maintenance window at 10AM EST/7AM PST/11PM UTC, and to be on the safe side, we're setting a window of 8 hours for possible downtime. It probably won't take that long, but there's also a (very small) chance it may take longer! We'll keep you updated on any changes with our off-site status Twitter account.
Wednesday, November 30th, 2016 08:19 pm
It's time for another question thread!

The rules:

- You may ask any dev-related question you have in a comment. (It doesn't even need to be about Dreamwidth, although if it involves a language/library/framework/database Dreamwidth doesn't use, you will probably get answers pointing that out and suggesting a better place to ask.)
- You may also answer any question, using the guidelines given in To Answer, Or Not To Answer and in this comment thread.
Wednesday, November 30th, 2016 10:10 am
As we prep for tomorrow's server maintenance, the site may look weird or 'naked' (no styling, images not loading, etc) on and off over the next hour or so. If you notice it, there's no need to report it: if it happens, we did it on purpose.
Tuesday, November 29th, 2016 07:34 pm
I'm really struggling to find any sort of equilibrium after the election results from a few weeks ago and I'm struggling to find a balance between staying informed and not living in a constant anxiety spiral (because every piece of news is worse...)

Anyway, the escape I found has been Superhero tv shows and Oh My God. Supergirl is my feminist happy place in so many ways - multiple women who have different goals and approach life different and are good at different things and each choice is acceptable? (it doesn't hurt that they talk about being "stronger together" and a female president). And then, because Netflix only had the first season, I switched to The Flash which is just as awesome.

But here's what I love - besides the superhero bit - both shows have women and characters of color (multiple!) who do a variety of jobs and are people. The Flash has a gay character who is There is no "the very special gay episode" - it's just people living their lives and accepting those around them for who they are. Given the toxicity in the real world now, it's such a breath of fresh air.
Monday, November 28th, 2016 03:48 pm
There will be a maintenance window, with some downtime, on Thursday, December 1, starting at 10AM EST/7AM PST/3PM UTC, for server maintenance and upgrades. To err on the side of caution, we're calling it an 8 hour window (so, until 6PM EST/3PM PST/11PM UTC), although we don't expect that the site will be in maintenance mode for the whole time.

We'll remind you Wednesday night, and again when the site is going into maintenance mode.